By Megan Longenecker
Over the years society has begun to view pets as an essential part of the family. Many pet owners treat their animals as they would their children. The relationship people have with their pets has opened the door for many unqualified business owners to open “puppy mills” for financial gain. Due to the harsh treatment of animals, puppy mills should be illegal.
A puppy mill is an operation where priority is given to profit rather than the welfare of the animal. More often than not the animals bred at puppy mills are prone to many life-long illnesses which carry through generations of breeding. The animals are sold via the internet to the public or to pet shops with forged lineage records and the customer is not aware of this happening. Puppy mills are often unsanitary, overcrowded and there is little to no veterinary care. The animals are kept in cages without being socialized with people or other animals. This can then lead to issues with shyness or aggression. Most females dogs are bred continuously with no time to recover between litters to the point where they can no longer reproduce.
In most states, puppy mills are not illegal. A breeding kennel can keep dozens of dogs in cages if the dogs receive basic needs, such as food, water and shelter. However, this does not constitute the sole care an animal requires. An animal should be allowed freedom to grow, learn, and experience life. Dogs, like most people, need nurturing, love and a friendly environment to live and play.
People should be conscientious to what is happening in puppy mills since the animals can not speak for themselves. It is up to us to make a change. Breeders do not care for the well-being of the dog, it is all about profit for them. It is inhumane to treat animals so recklessly for financial gain when, in fact, dogs can feel pain and rejection.
There are many options to take in order to shut down puppy mills. Most importantly, never purchase dogs from a pet store, but rather adopt from a shelter. Also, there are Advocacy groups to join to help fight for this cause. If we join together, hopefully, puppy mills will soon become a thing of the past.